Smooth Driving on Green Streets

Today I’m attending the Green Streets Green Jobs forum in Silver Spring, MD. I’m speaking on a panel before lunch about partnerships and funding opportunities, where I’ll be focusing on opportunities for green funding through the EPA’s State Revolving Fund (SRF) program.

For the past several years American Rivers has been working very hard to ensure that money from this fund be used for green projects that improve water quality and protect rivers. The past two years has seen federal laws put in place requiring portions of these funds be used specifically on green projects, such as green roofs and green streets.

Here in the clean water program we have worked tirelessly not only to see these requirements put in place, but to document their use. The goal today is to inform folks interested in Green Streets how they can access funds from the SRF program for their projects.

At the core of its mission the SRF program is designed to maintain the facilities that clean our polluted waste water. These facilities treat everything we flush down the toilet and in many cases also the rain water that runs off our streets. If we can utilize green streets to filter polluted rain water and keep it out of the wastewater system, we are in effect saving ourselves money by not having to clean it at the treatment plant.

Additionally, the methods we use for green streets, like trees and rain gardens, have the added benefit of making our communities more beautiful.

For more information on green streets see the Low Impact Development Center’s Green Streets page and for more information on green infrastructure in general, check out the EPA’s green infrastructure website.